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Pandora's Box (1929)

  • Plaza Theatre 1133 Kensington Road Northwest Calgary, AB, T2N 3P3 Canada (map)

When German director G.W. Pabst decided to cast his now-legendary film Pandora’s Box (1929), little did he know the striking Louise Brooks, an actress known only from underseen supporting roles in Hollywood, would define his legacy. With her role as the amoral Lulu, the fun-loving, Charleston-dancing temptress, Brooks has come to definitively embody our cinema’s notions of femininity, charisma, and eroticism in the silent film era. Based on a series of social gothic plays by Frank Wedekind, Pandora’s Box follows the adventures of Lulu, her pimp/possibly father, her husband, the son of her husband, and a lesbian countess (Alice Roberts), all of whom fall prey to Lulu’s effortless and vibrant magnetism. Pabst’s mesmerizing expressionist visuals and hypnotic editing rhythms ensure a film for the ages. And in Louise Brooks, a star bathed in shimmering charm and innocent hauteur, we find an iconic “Nasty Woman.”

-Written by Scott Lang

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